Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Cup 3--Jasmine #12

I received my order from Adagio Monday and one of the first teas that i tried was their Jasmine #12. This incredibly fragrant tea is really relaxing.

As you can (hopefully) see from the picture, this tea is similar to the Black Dragon Pearls with it's ball shape, but these are much smaller than the BDP. They unfurl while brewing and release a great aroma and show off the three individual leaves and stems that make up the balls. The yellow liquor that this tea produces smells like jasmine, and has a faint flowery taste. This is the perfect tea to chillax with. Curl up with a movie or a good book, have a few cups of tea and slowly drift off to sleep. I steeped mine 3 times, the first time for the 5 minutes suggested, the second for a few minutes, and then the third for about 5 minutes. I was mostly watching for color more than time.I've found that with this tea you can expect 2 or 3 good infusions with the same leaves, pretty good staying power for a Oolong.

"WAIT!!!" you say, "STOP EVERYTHING! what in the world is this Oolong?!"

Oolong is a traditionally Chinese tea that is a 'tweener. It's not a black, but it's not a green either. Oolong typically has multiple steps for it's production. First they wilt the leaves to partly remove the moisture. To do this they either sun or air dry the leaves. After this they cool the leaves down before they gently toss the leaves so that the edges of the leaves bruise. When the leaf edges are bruised it creates more surface contact for oxidation. This cooling and then tossing will usually be repeated multiple times. After this they stir-fry the leaves in a large pan over high heat in order to stop the oxidation. Then they roll the leaves into strands or nuggets before they dehydrate the leaves by roasting them over low heat. This roasting can be repeated at varying temperatures to produce different flavors. After the leaves have been roasted then all there is left to do is grade them and then package them up.

Jasmine #12 might look like mottled rodent droppings, but it tastes great, smells amazing, and is a perfect way to de-stress after a long day of class or work.

Kind-Oolong Tea
Brew Time-4 minutes
Water Temp-185*
Color-Light Yellow to Honey
Fragrance- Sweet, flowery
Taste-Floral, slightly sweet
Best during- Late Afternoon and Evening
Style- Loose
Price per oz- $5.00
Place bought- Adaigo
Overall- it's like eating flowers, in a good way!

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